To understand this problem, and to illustrate the issues, this chapter takes an in-depth look at an actual scenario and the issues that surround the decision-making process. Taken from real project experience, I hope to show the everyday pitfalls and complexities that, despite good intentions, can result in completely overwhelming whole life issues. A common element in the design specification and construction of a commercial

building is the roof. This is an area that normally has a long life requirement and needs to be handled with great care to ensure reliability. The interaction of waterproofing with insulation, and ensuring resistance to sometimes quite extreme conditions, are crucial elements. Again, often this is seen as an area in which to cut corners and reduce the design requirements. The order of activities is straightforward:

brief-setting establishment of the specification detailed design procurement tendering ordering and availability site establishment work on site – quality control completion maintenance and use recycling and reuse.